TODAY: Bikini-clad activists to expose Israel's dirty occupation and assault on Palestine at 'Tel Aviv Beach' in Central Park

June 21st, 2009

Jean Stevens, CODEPINK national media coordinator, 508-769-2138
Medea Benjamin, CODEPINK co-founder, 415-235-6517
Dana Balicki, CODEPINK campaign coordinator, 202-422-8624

TODAY: Bikini-clad activists to expose Israel's dirty occupation and assault on Palestine
at "Tel Aviv Beach" in Central Park

: 11:30 a.m. TODAY (Sunday, June 21)
WHERE: Naumberg Bandshell (at 72nd crossroad), Central Park, New York City (Tel-Aviv Beach for a day)

NEW YORK -- On the sands of the Israeli Ministry of Tourism's Tel Aviv Beach today in Central Park, bikini-clad activists from the women's group CODEPINK will cover themselves in mud to expose the truth behind the event: as a tool to clean up Israel's reputation in light of its dirty policies toward Palestine, including West Bank settlements, a border blockade of Gaza and this winter's devastating 22-day assault on Gaza that killed more than 1,400 civilians, injured 5,300 and destroyed approximately 4,000 homes.

“Promoting Tel Aviv as a destination for fun and sun will not cover Israel's grim reality, which includes illegal settlements, apartheid walls, and the ongoing siege of Gaza and oppression of Palestinians,” said CODEPINK co-founder Medea Benjamin, who just returned from a humanitarian delegation to Gaza. “Americans should demand that our government stop using our tax dollars to support Israeli war crimes.”

The activists have seen for themselves the devastation caused by the assault, and Israel's continuing blockade of the Gaza border. Within the past two months, five CODEPINK  delegations of more than 150  American and international activists traveled to Gaza, Egypt and Israel and delivered medical supplies, humanitarian aid and playgrounds for Gazan children.

The bikini-clad CODEPINK women will also distribute information exposing Israeli Dead Sea cosmetics company AHAVA ("love" in Hebrew), which uses mud illegally extracted from and packaged in the occupied territories.

 "Despite its name, there is nothing loving about a company that profits from stolen resources and oppressed people,” said CODEPINK coordinator Rae Abileah, who organized a protest of AHAVA in Tel Aviv last week. “We will paint ourselves with mud to show AHAVA's dirty side.”

CODEPINK's "Stolen Beauty" AHAVA boycott campaign is part of the International Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Movement for Palestine to economically pressure the Israeli government to end its assault on Palestine and comply with international law.

For more information on our campaign, recent protest events and more, visit For questions, please contact Jean Stevens, national media coordinator, at 508-769-2138 or email at